Visualizing Women's Economic Rights Around the World
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Visualizing Women’s Economic Rights Around the World

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Visualizing Women’s Economic Rights Around the World 1700

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Visualizing Women’s Economic Rights in Each Country

In recent years, many economies have made women’s rights a priority by eliminating job restrictions, working to reduce the gender wage gap, or changing legislation related to marriage and parenthood.

Still, many laws continue to inhibit women’s ability to enter the workforce or start a business—and even to travel outside their homes in the same way as men. In fact, on average globally, women have just three-quarters of the economic rights of men.

This map uses data from the Women, Business and Law 2021 report by the World Bank, to visualize women’s economic rights around the world.

Legal Protections

According to the World Bank, only 10 countries offer full legal protections to women, and all of them are in the Northern Hemisphere.

In ranking countries, the institution considers indicators like equal remuneration, legal rights, and mobility. A score of 100 means that women are on equal legal standing with men across all areas measured.

RankCountry/TerritoryScore
1Belgium100.0
1Canada100.0
1Denmark100.0
1France100.0
1Iceland100.0
1Ireland100.0
1Latvia100.0
1Luxembourg100.0
1Portugal100.0
1Sweden100.0
2Estonia97.5
2Finland97.5
2Germany97.5
2Greece97.5
2Italy97.5
2Netherlands97.5
2New Zealand97.5
2Spain97.5
2United Kingdom97.5
3Australia96.9
3Austria96.9
3Hungary96.9
3Norway96.9
3Slovenia96.9
4Peru95.0
5Paraguay94.4
6Croatia93.8
6Czech Republic93.8
6Lithuania93.8
6Poland93.8
6Serbia93.8
7Kosovo91.9
7Mauritius91.9
8Albania91.3
8Cyprus91.3
8Taiwan, China91.3
8United States91.3
9Bulgaria90.6
9Romania90.6
10Ecuador89.4
10Hong Kong, China89.4
11Bolivia88.8
11El Salvador88.8
11Malta88.8
11Mexico88.8
11Uruguay88.8
12Lao PDR88.1
12Montenegro88.1
12South Africa88.1
13Guyana86.9
13Zimbabwe86.9
14Cabo Verde86.3
14Dominican Republic86.3
14Namibia86.3
14Nicaragua86.3
14São Tomé and Príncipe86.3
15Georgia85.6
15Switzerland85.6
16Bosnia and Herzegovina85.0
16Brazil85.0
16Korea, Rep.85.0
16North Macedonia85.0
16Slovak Republic85.0
16Venezuela85.0
17Moldova84.4
17Togo84.4
18Liberia83.8
18Puerto Rico (US)83.8
18St. Lucia83.8
19Costa Rica83.1
19Côte d'Ivoire83.1
19Timor-Leste83.1
20Armenia82.5
20Fiji82.5
20Mongolia82.5
20Mozambique82.5
20Singapore82.5
20Turkey82.5
20United Arab Emirates82.5
21Colombia81.9
21Japan81.9
21Vietnam81.9
22Bahamas81.3
22Tanzania81.3
22Zambia81.3
23Grenada80.6
23Israel80.6
23Kenya80.6
23Nepal80.6
23Rwanda80.6
24Chile80.0
24Samoa80.0
24San Marino80.0
24Saudi Arabia80.0
25Belize79.4
25Burkina Faso79.4
25Panama79.4
25Ukraine79.4
26Azerbaijan78.8
26Congo, Dem. Rep.78.8
26Kiribati78.8
26Philippines78.8
26Tajikistan78.8
27Lesotho78.1
27Thailand78.1
28Benin77.5
28Malawi77.5
29Barbados76.9
29Central African Republic76.9
29Ethiopia76.9
29Kyrgyz Republic76.9
30Argentina76.3
30Guinea76.3
30Seychelles76.3
31Belarus75.6
31China75.6
31Morocco75.6
32Cambodia75.0
32Ghana75.0
32Honduras75.0
32Trinidad and Tobago75.0
33Gambia74.4
33India74.4
33Madagascar74.4
34Maldives73.8
34Suriname73.8
35Angola73.1
35Burundi73.1
35Russia73.1
35Uganda73.1
36Bhutan71.9
37St. Kitts and Nevis71.3
38Guatemala70.6
38Uzbekistan70.6
39South Sudan70.0
40Eritrea69.4
40Kazakhstan69.4
40Sierra Leone69.4
41Dijibouti68.1
41Jamaica68.1
41Marshall Islands68.1
41St. Vicent and the Grenadines68.1
42Tunisia67.5
43Senegal66.9
44Antigua and Barbuda66.3
44Chad66.3
45Sri Lanka65.6
46Comoros65.0
47Indonesia64.4
48Botswana63.8
48Haiti63.8
48Micronesia63.8
49Nigeria63.1
50Dominica62.5
51Mali60.6
52Cameroon60.0
52Papua New Guinea60.0
53Niger59.4
54Myanmar58.8
54Palau58.8
54Tonga58.8
55Vanuatu58.1
56Algeria57.5
56Gabon57.5
57Solomon Islands56.9
58Bahrain55.6
58Pakistan55.6
59Brunei Darussalam53.1
60Lebanon52.5
61Equatorial Guinea51.9
62Libya50.0
62Malaysia50.0
63Bangladesh49.4
63Congo, Rep.49.4
64Mauritania48.1
65Jordan46.9
65Somalia46.9
66Eswatini46.3
67Egypt45.0
67Iraq45.0
68Guinea-Bissau42.5
69Afghanistan38.1
70Syria36.9
71Oman35.6
72Iran31.3
73Qatar29.4
73Sudan29.4
74Kuwait28.8
75Yemen26.9
76West Bank and Gaza26.3

According to the report, there are 20 economies in the world where women still have half or fewer of the legal economic rights of men.

Under Taliban rule, for example, women in Afghanistan have limited access to education and work. In the Gaza Strip, women must have the permission of a male guardian to travel.

Yet, some differences are also seen in developed countries.

In the U.S, women still earn an average of about 82 cents for each dollar earned by men, and the gap across many countries in Europe is similar. Meanwhile, women are represented in just 23% of seats in national parliaments globally, and make up just 13% of agricultural landholders.

The Shadow Pandemic

COVID-19 has exacerbated existing inequalities that disadvantage girls and women, including barriers to attend school and maintain jobs, according to the United Nations.

In fact, new research shows that the sectors that have been most affected by the pandemic so far are those with high levels of women workers, including the restaurant and hospitality business, as well as the travel sector.

While leaders debate recovery in a post-pandemic world, rights equality remains a central topic for social and economic development.

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Technology

33 Problems With Media in One Chart

In this infographic, we catalog 33 problems with the social and mass media ecosystem.

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problems with media

33 Problems With Media in One Chart

One of the hallmarks of democratic society is a healthy, free-flowing media ecosystem.

In times past, that media ecosystem would include various mass media outlets, from newspapers to cable TV networks. Today, the internet and social media platforms have greatly expanded the scope and reach of communication within society.

Of course, journalism plays a key role within that ecosystem. High quality journalism and the unprecedented transparency of social media keeps power structures in check—and sometimes, these forces can drive genuine societal change. Reporters bring us news from the front lines of conflict, and uncover hard truths through investigative journalism.

That said, these positive impacts are sometimes overshadowed by harmful practices and negative externalities occurring in the media ecosystem.

The graphic above is an attempt to catalog problems within the media ecosystem as a basis for discussion. Many of the problems are easy to understand once they’re identified. However, in some cases, there is an interplay between these issues that is worth digging into. Below are a few of those instances.

Editor’s note: For a full list of sources, please go to the end of this article. If we missed a problem, let us know!

Explicit Bias vs. Implicit Bias

Broadly speaking, bias in media breaks down into two types: explicit and implicit.

Publishers with explicit biases will overtly dictate the types of stories that are covered in their publications and control the framing of those stories. They usually have a political or ideological leaning, and these outlets will use narrative fallacies or false balance in an effort to push their own agenda.

Unintentional filtering or skewing of information is referred to as implicit bias, and this can manifest in a few different ways. For example, a publication may turn a blind eye to a topic or issue because it would paint an advertiser in a bad light. These are called no fly zones, and given the financial struggles of the news industry, these no fly zones are becoming increasingly treacherous territory.

Misinformation vs. Disinformation

Both of these terms imply that information being shared is not factually sound. The key difference is that misinformation is unintentional, and disinformation is deliberately created to deceive people.

Fake news stories, and concepts like deepfakes, fall into the latter category. We broke down the entire spectrum of fake news and how to spot it, in a previous infographic.

Simplify, Simplify

Mass media and social feeds are the ultimate Darwinistic scenario for ideas.

Through social media, stories are shared widely by many participants, and the most compelling framing usually wins out. More often than not, it’s the pithy, provocative posts that spread the furthest. This process strips context away from an idea, potentially warping its meaning.

Video clips shared on social platforms are a prime example of context stripping in action. An (often shocking) event occurs, and it generates a massive amount of discussion despite the complete lack of context.

This unintentionally encourages viewers to stereotype the persons in the video and bring our own preconceived ideas to the table to help fill in the gaps.

Members of the media are also looking for punchy story angles to capture attention and prove the point they’re making in an article. This can lead to cherrypicking facts and ideas. Cherrypicking is especially problematic because the facts are often correct, so they make sense at face value, however, they lack important context.

Simplified models of the world make for compelling narratives, like good-vs-evil, but situations are often far more complex than what meets the eye.

The News Media Squeeze

It’s no secret that journalism is facing lean times. Newsrooms are operating with much smaller teams and budgets, and one result is ‘churnalism’. This term refers to the practice of publishing articles directly from wire services and public relations releases.

Churnalism not only replaces more rigorous forms of reporting—but also acts as an avenue for advertising and propaganda that is harder to distinguish from the news.

The increased sense of urgency to drive revenue is causing other problems as well. High-quality content is increasingly being hidden behind paywalls.

The end result is a two-tiered system, with subscribers receiving thoughtful, high-quality news, and everyone else accessing shallow or sensationalized content. That everyone else isn’t just people with lower incomes, it also largely includes younger people. The average age of today’s paid news subscriber is 50 years old, raising questions about the future of the subscription business model.

For outlets that rely on advertising, desperate times have called for desperate measures. User experience has taken a backseat to ad impressions, with ad clutter (e.g. auto-play videos, pop-ups, and prompts) interrupting content at every turn. Meanwhile, in the background, third-party trackers are still watching your every digital move, despite all the privacy opt-in prompts.

How Can We Fix the Problems with Media?

With great influence comes great responsibility. There is no easy fix to the issues that plague news and social media. But the first step is identifying these issues, and talking about them.

The more media literate we collectively become, the better equipped we will be to reform these broken systems, and push for accuracy and transparency in the communication channels that bind society together.

Sources and further reading:

Veils of Distortion: How the News Media Warps our Minds by John Zada
Hate Inc. by Matt Taibbi
The Truth Matters: A Citizen’s Guide to Separating Facts from Lies and Stopping Fake News in its Tracks by Bruce Bartlett
Active Measures: The Secret History of Disinformation and Political Warfare by Thomas Rid
The Twittering Machine by Richard Seymour
After the Fact by Nathan Bomey
Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier
Zucked by Roger McNamee
Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Highjacking of the American Conversation by Andrew Marantz
Social media is broken by Sara Brown
The U.S. Media’s Problems Are Much Bigger than Fake News and Filter Bubbles by Bharat N. Anand
What’s Wrong With the News? by FAIR
Is the Media Doomed? by Politico
The Implied Truth Effect by Gordon Pennycook, Adam Bear, Evan T. Collins, David G. Rand

 

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Misc

Visualizing the Current State of the Global Gender Gap

At our current rate of change, it will take up to 136 years to close the global gender gap. Here’s a look at gender inequality across regions.

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Map showing gender gaps in each region

The Current State of the Global Gender Gap

As a global society, we still have a long way to go before we reach gender equality around the world.

According to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) latest Global Gender Gap Report, it could take up to 135.6 years to close the global gender gap, based on the current rate of change.

This graphic by Sebastian Gräff gives a breakdown of gender equality worldwide, showing how long it will take before each region reaches gender parity.

How Gender Gap is Measured

In its 15th edition, the Global Gender Gap Report analyzes gender-based discrepancies across 156 different countries. To gauge each region’s gender gap, the report digs into four key areas:

  1. Economic Participation and Opportunity
  2. Educational Attainment
  3. Health and Survival
  4. Political Empowerment

Each subindex is given its own score, then an average across the four pillars is calculated to give each country a final score between zero (exceptionally unequal) and one (completely equal).

Regional Breakdown

Out of all the regions, Western Europe has the smallest gender gap, with a score of 0.78. At this rate, the gender gap in Western Europe could be closed in approximately 52.1 years, more than 83 years faster than the global estimate.

RankRegionOverall Gender Gap Index (2021)
1Western Europe0.77
2North America0.76
3Latin America and the Caribbean0.71
4Eastern Europe and Central Asia0.71
5East Asia and the Pacific0.69
6Sub-Saharan Africa0.67
7South Asia0.62
8Middle East and North Africa0.61
Global Average0.69

Western Europe scores particularly high in educational attainment (1.0) and health and survival (0.97). Here’s a look at the category breakdown for each region:

RegionEconomic Participation and OpportunityEducational AttainmentHealth and SurvivalPolitical Empowerment
Western Europe0.701.000.970.44
North America0.751.000.970.33
Latin America and the Caribbean0.641.000.980.27
Eastern Europe and Central Asia0.741.000.980.14
East Asia and the Pacific0.700.980.950.14
Sub-Saharan Africa0.660.850.970.21
South Asia0.340.930.940.28
Middle East and North Africa0.410.940.970.12
Global Average0.620.960.970.22

But it might be surprising to see that political empowerment in Western Europe received a score of only 0.44. This is higher than the global average for political empowerment of 0.21, but still indicative of a large gender gap in this area.

Globally, political empowerment tended to receive the lowest scores in the report, as women are grossly underrepresented in politics. A study by the Council of Foreign Relations revealed that out of 195 different countries’ national cabinets, only 14 countries had at least 50% of their ministerial positions held by women.

Economic participation and opportunity is the second weakest category, with a global average score of 0.58. A good example of how this gap manifests itself is in entrepreneurship and business, where women still struggle to find investors and gain access to venture capital. Further, on average, women continue to make less money than men. According to the UN, women across the globe make approximately 77 cents for every dollar earned by men.

The Economic Benefit of Gender Equality

Research shows that empowering women in the workforce is in everyone’s best interest. Closing the gender gap in the global workforce could lead to a boost of more than $28 trillion to the global economy.

Yet across the globe, COVID-19 has created new challenges that have hindered our progress towards gender equality. This is partly because some of the sectors that have been impacted the most by COVID-19 restrictions, such as hospitality, food services, and personal care, are largely dominated by female workers.

As we continue to recover from the impact of COVID-19, world leaders will face numerous policy challenges, including how to build back better, creating more opportunities for women to thrive in the global economy.

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